Off Again – On again Merger Talks

I had previously written about the Revolutionary Trails Council (RTC) and the Otschodela Council (OC) proposed merger of the two Councils.

While the merger was overwhelmingly approved by the RTC, it only had a small majority in the OC vote. Apparently NY Law requires a 2/3 majority for this type of consolidation.

National however felt otherwise:

This simple majority satisfied the requirements of BSA, but not the requirements of the State of New York. The state requires a 2/3 majority, thus the merger was defeated. Following that vote, our Area Director informed us that we would not be allowed to conduct a search for a Scout Executive and must merge with another council to meet the minimum standards set by the national office. Our future is in our hands and we are forced to make some timely decisions.

In the wake of the defeat, an Ad-hoc committee (with a majority of members speaking against the original merge) was formed to take a closer look at our neighboring councils to consider which one(s) we should consider for a merge. The results of that committee’s findings are attached. Some local councils would present financial challenges, others would force the closure of Henderson.

The Committee felt it was best to:

…continue talks with Revolutionary Trails, as we address the three issues that appear to be of the utmost concern for people who are on “both sides of the fence”, 1) the preservation of Henderson Scout Reservation, 2) assurance that our financial situation is secure and 3) a continued office presence in the Oneonta area.

A new vote is scheduled for November 16, 2015.

“I suppose, indeed, that in public life, a man whose political principles have any decided character and who has energy enough to give them effect must always expect to encounter political hostility from those of adverse principles.” Thomas Jefferson


New Council Information – Illinois/Indiana/Chicago Area Council Mergers

Bob Cylkowski posted to Patch-L about an upcoming council consolidation in the metro Chicago Area.

The purpose of this letter is to inform you of the creation of a new Council in the Chicago metropolitan and Northwestern Indiana areas.

Four councils – Northwest Suburban, Chicago Area, Des Plaines Valley and Calumet will all be served by this new yet unnamed council. A contest will be held among the youth membership to determine the name.

Local Pack, Troop, Crew and Post structure and program will not be affected! In addition, no changes are being made to District operations.

Everyone who is registered in one of the four councils mentioned above, will be automatically registered in the new council.

Unit numbers will remain the same.

District names, and boundaries will not change.

The council will continue to operate four Council Service Centers for the convenience of Scouting families.

Here is a link to the full notice.

What the exact format will be; a single council or some version of the field service councils now in use in Michigan remains to be seen. As does the outcome for the Owasippe and the other effected OA lodges.


“It is a principle incorporated into the settled policy of America, that as peace is better than war, war is better than tribute.” –James Madison, letter to the Dey of Algiers, 1816


Three Harbors Council – Wisconsin Merger

There have been a couple of notices on Patch-L regarding this Wisconsin Council Merger.

More than 24,000 youth in Scouting programs in Kenosha, Milwaukee and Racine counties have now banded together in a new Boy Scout council as the result of a consolidation vote on Wednesday. Representatives of the Milwaukee County Council and the Southeast Wisconsin Council, that serve Kenosha and Racine counties, voted to consolidate into one council that will be called the Three Harbors Council, Boy Scouts of America.

As to the staus of the OA Lodges which I believe are Mikano Lodge #230 and Mascouten Lodge #8 respectively:

The Order of the Arrow lodge in Kenosha and Racine Counties and the Order of the Arrow lodge in Milwaukee County will continue separate operations with the objective of forming one new lodge within eighteen months after the Effective Date.

There is also talk of merger activity in Michigan, reported by Roy More on his blog.

Anyone aware of ongoing merger talks in New York?

History would be worthless to us if it did not teach us to keep on our guard against the natural intolerance of an orthodoxy wielding power.The Age of Voltaire


New BSA Council Named – Great Lakes Council

Brother Andrew sends along a link with news about the new BSA council in Michigan which has now chosen its new name.

Two local Boy Scouts of America councils have merged and are now operating as the Great Lakes Council.

The former Detroit Area Council in Detroit and the Waterford Township -based Clinton Valley Council, which served Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties, announced their Oct. 1 merger and new name today.

There is a bit more on the Council web site:

The New Michigan Council has a New Name!

There were 300 names submitted for consideration for our New Michigan Council which were reviewed by the Naming the Council committee. After careful consideration, that list was decreased to 39 and placed on the website for selection by Scouts and Scouters. Approximately 9,530 selections were made from over 3,000 people and the overwhelming response reveals the name of the New Michigan Council: Great Lakes Council.

It ends with:

Coming soon! Your chance to help design the Great Lakes Council CSP!

No word on the status of the OA Lodges.


“We should never despair, our Situation before has been unpromising and has changed for the better, so I trust, it will again. If new difficulties arise, we must only put forth new Exertions and proportion our Efforts to the exigency of the times.” –George Washington




Merger Approved

I previously wrote about a potential merger between two Illinois Councils, Trails West and Okaw Valley councils. Well now it looks like the the merger has been approved.

Members of the Trails West Boy Scout Council and the Okaw Valley Boy Scout Council voted to consolidate the two councils and form a new council.

The new Boy Scout council in the metro-east area will be known as the Lewis and Clark Council, said Robert J. Smejkal Jr., program director at the Trails West Council in Wood River. The new council will oversee Boy Scouts in a 15-county area of Southwestern Illinois.

Since the merger is after the OA charter period, it is likely the OA Lodges will not be required to merge until the end of 2009.


If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to.
Dorothy Parker
US author, humorist, poet, & wit (1893 – 1967)

Trails West and Okaw Valley Councils Merger Update

Last month I wrote about a potential merger between two Illinois Councils, Trails West and Okaw Valley councils. Well now it looks like the next step towards a merger has been approved. The Council Newsletter relates:

On Wednesday, October 29th, Executive Boards from both Trails West Council and Okaw Valley Council met and approved a resolution to consolidate the two councils and form a new Boy Scout council in the Metro East area.  A new combined council would service 15 counties and over 20,000 youth members.

The Final vote will take place in January 2009

A final vote on the recommendation will take place on January 6, 2009 by voting members of the council. These members are Charter Organization Representatives, Members at Large and Executive Board members. At present a time and place are being secured. A formal letter will be mailed to these voting members informing them of location.

Since the final vote will not take place until after the OA Charter process,

The Order of the Arrow lodges would  operate as separate lodges until late in 2009. At that time, the lodges would consolidate into a  new lodge with a new name. Members of both executive committees have already met and established the time tables and details.

More info when it becomes available.


Government cannot make man richer, but it can make him poorer.” —Ludwig von Mises